The Los Angeles Times reports today that, "Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger proclaimed a statewide drought emergency Friday, urging Californians to cut water use by 20% and easing the way for water sales from Northern California to Southern California cities and San Joaquin Valley farms."
California has a population of 36.8 million people.
WATER SITUATION IS A CRISIS
"Schwarzenegger called the state's water situation 'a crisis, just as severe as an earthquake or raging wildfire.'"
STOPS SHORT OF MANDATORY WATER RATIONING "The drought declaration stops short of mandatory water rationing. But it asks urban water users to step up conservation efforts. And it directs state agencies to cut back on landscape irrigation, including along highways."
STREAMLINES PERMITS FOR DESALINATION OPERATIONS "The directive also orders the state to streamline permitting for water projects, such as recycling or desalination operations, and expedite water transfers to needy irrigation districts and urban areas in Southern California."